Any pointers for a newbie for concealed carry?

Looking for insight into what type of firearm to consider as a new concealed carry. I’m a fairly small person so my hand isn’t very comfortable in many handguns, and I wanted something relatively small to carry on my person that isn’t so bulky. Any pointers?


@Nicholas122 Welcome to our community, we are glad to have you here. :slightly_smiling_face:


Welcome aboard!
Something like a concealed carry handgun, literally putting your life in your hands. No one can do it for you!
It’s more of a touch, feel, rent, shoot, decide.
Most local gun store ranges allow you to rent, best way to get a good feel. Find comfort and reliability. In some cases cost. It’s your life!




@Nicholas122 These would be my 2 choices, I carry both as back up guns from time to time. :+1:


3032 Tomcat Inox | Beretta

Beretta 3032 Tomcat Inox: Durable Finish for All-Day Concealed Carry

The Beretta 3032 Tomcat Inox is tiny, sized like average cell phone. Besides offering the power of the .32 ACP cartridge, it sports a tough and durable stainless-steel finish.

As such, this double/single-action autopistol it is perfect for deep concealment or used as a backup second handgun. Its tip-up barrel design makes it easy to load, operate and maintain, while its traditional looks give it the allure of a true classic.

The controls of the 3032 Tomcat Inox are designed to be simple and to provide safety and peace of mind while carrying. The two-position safety engages crisply and positively, and locks the slide as well as preventing the pistol from firing. The magazine release is located to the left of the grip, making it easy to locate and operate even with one hand.

Taurus 856 Revolvers - 38 Spl +P, CA/MA Certified Models (

The Taurus 856 is a reliable 6-shot, 38 Special revolver that features soft rubber grips-making it comfortable to shoot at the range while the double/single action increases speed and accuracy for follow-up shots. The 856 is offered in either a Matte Black or Matte Stainless finish. Known for its easily managed recoil impulse, the .38 Special round of the 856 can accommodate ammunition ranging from light target loads to self-defense rounds. The 2-inch barrel on the 856 now comes with a removable serrated front sight optimizing on-body or off-body carry, and home defense usage.


Welcome @Nicholas122. What Scott said matters most. Find something that “feels” right to you. Don’t get hung up on caliber. There’s a different thread going right now about “stopping power” and one thing rings true: all handguns in the major self defense calibers (.380 ACP, .38 Special, 9mm, .357, .45ACP, 10mm) will do their part to stop a threat, as long as you can do your part. Find something you can shoot well, afford ammo for, and will want to practice with as often as possible, and that you’ll carry every day, everywhere, all the time. It’s a very personal decision process.


Hello and welcome @Nicholas122


Go to a LGS and try the Ruger Max-9, Glock 43, Shield compact.

I intentionally limited my suggestions to 9mm since you’re a newbie. Been there, done that.

Stay safe.


Giving a personal opinion here, FWIW, I’ve been a daily carrier for only a few years, having been a more or less lifelong gun owner/shooting enthusiast. I’d shot many, many guns over the years, including large caliber revolvers and rifles. When I started carrying, I wasn’t sure of my own coordination and mental acuity in a true life or death situation, and I wasn’t even sure I’d be competent managing to disengage a basic thumb safety, so I chose a DA-only revolver. I KNEW I could shoot it well, and operate it properly in the most horrific stressful situation I might be carrying for. Since then, with training and practice (including daily mental and dry fire practice), I’m comfortable carrying a semi-auto condition one, and I know I’d be able to properly use it, but my little S&W 642 still rides around in my pocket every day, morning to night, even if I have my semiauto on my hip.


What handgun training have you received so far?


I am not a big guy. I carry the Sig P365. It balances small size with a lot of capability. It works for me anyway.


As for throwing a list of models at the wall hoping some stick, research the following

S&W Shield Plus
Glock 43 and 43X
Springfield Hellcat
Ruger LC9s

Edit: The Walther PDP-F is a good mention down below, however, holster selection and parts/magazine availability will be lesser.

Generally speaking for a first carry gun you want something ubiquitous. A .380 or 9mm Glock, Smith and Wesson, Ruger, or Springfield (different models available) qualifies. You want there to be tons of magazine choices, optic mounting options (down the road maybe), sights, etc.

Some of the guns out there are excellent but don’t have the volume to have that kind of support. SOme of the Walther, CZ, H&K, etc, might fit that description


Welcome to the family brother @Nicholas122 and its great to have you here. Just to name a few M&P 9 Shield Plus, Sig Sauer P365, Springfield Hellcat, Glock 43x, Ruger LCS 9mm. All are concealable and lightweight with decent capacity and great for someone who is just starting their journey with concealed carry. Plenty of YouTube reviews on all of them.


I would recommend trying out a S&W .380 EZ and/or the PDP-F (9mm).

I think just about all ranges will allow you to rent firearms so if they do, I’d suggest the two above and/or all the ones that will be listed in the above comments.

The range I usually go to will allow you to rent a specific firearm and then, you can swap out that firearm for another of the same caliber and no cost. Just the initial fee (and ammo if you don’t bring your own).

So if I may be so bold, go through the comments and write done some guns that look interesting and then hit the range and test them.

As have been said, picking a gun is a personal choice. People can recommend all they want but until you actually get it in your hand and fire it a couple of times, you just won’t know.


You’ve gotten great advice on this thread.

One thing I haven’t seen mentioned is this: take a basic, entry level training class. A lot of the instructors and clubs that teach those will loan you a gun for free as a part of the class fee. You get training and you get to try out a gun. Those classes will also discuss guns suitable for concealed carry. Most of the recommendations here are striker fired pistols. If you don’t know what that means and what the different types of pistols are, that basic pistol course will teach you that as well.

I don’t know where you are geographically, but many of the folks in this thread would probably meet up with you at a range, ensure you can safely handle a gun, and then let you try theirs out.

Blessings on your journey. Glad to have you aboard.


Getting there, waiting for OP to answer on what handgun training he has had so far.

Because picking a gun based on feel without ever having been instructed/trained is akin to picking a car before you’ve had driver’s ed or hit the road.

You don’t know what you don’t know and don’t have the experience or knowledge to properly weigh attributes, don’t know how to objectively evaluate aspects, etc.


Now, to continue on that example and post yet again in this thread

I would equate these vehicle options to their concealed carry pistol options…give or take

Glock 43: Honda Civic
Glock 19: F150 XL crew cab
Glock 26: F150 XL extended cab
S&W Shield Plus: Toyota Corolla
Ruger LC9s: Kia Forte
Sig P365: Kia Soul
S&W M&P 2.0 compact: Silverado 1500 crew cab
S&W M&P 2.0 sub compact: Silverado 1500 extended cab
1995 Ferrari F355 manual transmission and gated shifter: High end 1911
Porsche 911: H&K VP9 or P30

Okay okay so the Pinto should probably be the old old partially supported chamber Glock .40 pistols


Hi. So… there have been a number of suggestions made as to what handgun you might consider. I’m not going to suggest any others. What I’d like to say here is this… Regardless of what gun you decide on, do yourself a favor… train, train and train. Learn and train. Good luck.


@Nicholas122 Check out the Sig P365, and the Sig P365X. There’s a Sig P365XL that’s a little bit longer, but look into the first 2 mentioned. Welcome to the community! These are in 9mm if that’s the caliber you’re seeking. Also available in 22LR, Sig P322, same dimensions as the P365, and share the same holsters.